Monday, 22 June 2009

Exchange students move across institutional borders

TAMK University of Applied Sciences and PIRAMK University of Applied Sciences participate actively in the development of international students' mobility, flexible studies and online services between the higher education institutions in Tampere.

Exchange students of University of Tampere, Tampere University of Technology, TAMK and PIRAMK have been able to select courses across the higher education institution borders since 2006 as part of the Studying in Tampere Region (SITR) project. Thus far, hundreds of students have complemented their studies by means of the cooperation institutions' supply. The SITR project has also been the first in Finland to pilot student mobility online services between universities and universities of applied sciences.

The joint educational supply extends the current course supply of each higher education institution, enables sufficient participation in special field courses and improves exchange students' possibility to select high-level and versatile studies. Practical implementation of the joint educational supply and right to study requires many study administration, information system, and information and student mobility solutions.

Courses available for international students are collected to a joint SITR online service. Automatic collection of courses from the higher education institutions' own information systems has been developed as a part of national cooperation. The current SITR supply has been implemented by means of the Finnish Online University of Applied Sciences' Joopas service. A joint view has been created for the service of the higher education institutions in Tampere.

The SITR online services also include an electronic application system, which students can log into by using the user name and password of their own higher education institution in Tampere when they have selected the courses they want. Basic student information comes directly from the student information system of their own higher education institution, which facilitates both filling and processing of applications.

- Development of the service has required long-span work between diverse fields and organisation members. Community spirit has been the key prerequisite for progress. Technical solutions have been found when common principles have first been established. Cooperation between the higher education institutions in Tampere has expanded along with the project, states Project Manager Maria Virtanen.

Studying in Tampere Region home
Exchange studies at TAMK

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Ecoday arranged by students of Environmental Engineering

With the fund received from the city of Tampere's climate campaign "ILMANKOS", TAMK's Environmental Engineering students' Association G.L.O.B.E. arranged an “Ecoday in Ritakatu”. The day and event was aimed especially at foreign students studying in TAMK and PIRAMK and living in the IOT student housing in Ritakatu, Ruotula.

The idea for the Ecoday came from the fact that some environmental students concerned about waste management and other environmental issues were especially concerned of the situation in IOT buildings in Ritakatu. Lot of information that existed on the site about waste management was in Finnish only and most foreign students, especially exchange students, are only capable of understanding English.

So us Env.Eng. students, in G.L.O.B.E., felt that we could do something. The project arranged aimed towards protecting the environment, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and for a saving in the general costs of waste management for all parties involved.

Students who participated in the planning and executing the Ecoday event were altogether 11 and from all over the world, such places as Tanzania, Vietnam, China, UK, Algeria, South-Africa...

Few of the participants comments captured to describe the event better:

“We walked toward the buildings where we were going from a door to another, introducing briefly ourselves to the inhabitants, why we are here and what we were expecting from them. We distributed the material that we had such as: Brochures, Biodegradable waste bags for biowaste sorting, energy-saving lamps, and giving them an opportunity to get rid of hazardous waste if they had any and then disposed it properly to one of the waste handling sites in Tampere.”

“Indeed, separating waste is simple and important but not all the people know how to do it correctly. So I hope more similar activities will be organized in the coming future.”

"Information sharing and little help of material to get started with and students were one step more motivated to recycle more and think about their energy consumption".

Monday, 15 June 2009

TAMK Considered the Most Interesting and International UAS

TAMK UAS is the most interesting study place among the Finnish universities of applied sciences; this is the result of the imago research made by Taloustutkimus market research company.

The most approving assessments TAMK got for location (= Tampere), reputation as a study place, diversity of study fields and the appreciation by working life. "We can be most satisfied with the result, because these are exactly the factors that affect most the choice of the study place", says Ms. Aura Loikkanen, Development Director at TAMK. TAMK got also more often a positive than a negative assessment in the five additional imago factors.

The general estimate of TAMK was the second best, only the Police College of Finland got better scores. Taloustutkimus has done the UAS imago research annually since 2002, and every year TAMK has been first or second among the 28 UAS.

TAMK was number one in attractivity of study place and internationality and in the top ten in all categories.

Taloustutkimus interviewed 1504 persons in the age of 17 to 29 years in February 2009 for this report.

TAMK is the most popular UAS among secondary school students

T-Media Oy interviewed 5709 upper secondary school students about their attitudes on studies and working life. The most popular UAS was TAMK.

In the joint online application of Finnish universities of applied sciences this year the most attractive universities were Pirkanmaa UAS (PIRAMK) and TAMK. The both universities merge beginning of next year, so everything looks really good.

Want to study in one of the best UAS in Finland?

Application to Finnish universities of applied sciences happens trough a system joint online application. So if you want to apply for one of the six international degree programmes run in English of merged PIRAMK/TAMK in August 2010, you should fill in your online application between mid-January and mid-February next year. The exact dates will be set by the Finish Board of Education later.

The application website will be launched in September, so stay tuned, we will report everything and publish links in this blog.

Read more about the TAMK/PIRAMK merger
TAMK in English
PIRAMK in English

Monday, 8 June 2009

TAMK celebrates its graduates

The entertainment was provided by Petteri Jakobsson

TAMK held its graduation ceremonies on Saturday the 6th of June. 382 degrees were completed at TAMK during the spring 2009. This was the last graduation ceremony held at TAMK as it is today, because TAMK merges with PIRAMK on the 1st of January 2009.

Managing Director Sari Rämö from SCA Packaging Finland represented the working life. “A degree from a university of applied sciences gives excellent prerequisites for interesting tasks. As the years go by, you might find yourself in surprising places. A person with a Bachelor’s degree in engineering might find themselves in sales tasks or being a personnel manager.”

TAMK president Markku Lahtinen was happy to announce that over 90 % of TAMK’s Bachelor’s and Master’s theses are carried out to meet the demands of the working life. “These theses are of high quality, which has been demonstrated by e.g. having a student graduating from TAMK degree programme of electrical engineering receive the national Thesis award in May 2009.”

Graduating students naturally gave speeches at the ceremony as well. Brazilian Vanessa Dos Santos-Juusela, who graduated from Environmental engineering, praised the support she had received from TAMK staff: “There was never a problem which the Head of our Degree Programme could not solve.”

Friday, 5 June 2009


TAMK University of Applied Sciences and PIRAMK University of Applied Sciences will merge at the beginning of 2010.

The name of the new university will be TAMK University of Applied Sciences. In addition to the city of Tampere, the new TAMK will operate in Ikaalinen, Mänttä-Vilppula and Virrat. The merged UAS will have almost 9000 students.

The most popular UAS in Finland

In the joint application of spring 2009, TAMK and PIRAMK were the two most popular among the Finnish universities of applied sciences. In the joint application to youth education, TAMK had on average 4.8 primary applicants and PIRAMK 5.2 primary applicants per study place. The Finnish average was 3.3 primary applicants per study place.

The new TAMK offers degree programmes in seven out of eight different Finnish fields of stydy:
  • Culture
  • Natural Sciences
  • Social Sciences, Business and Administration
  • Technology, Communications and Transport
  • Natural Resources and the Environment
  • Social Services, Health and Sports
  • Tourism, Catering and Domestic Services
In addition, TAMK offers vocational teacher education and diverse further and continuing education possibilities.

In practice, the both universities are already working together in many areas, like research and development. A joint web site to support the application period for degree programmes run in English will be launched in September. The application period starts in January.

The Bachelor's programmes run in English are
  • Degree Programme in Environmental Engineering
  • Degree Programme in International Business
  • Degree Programme in Media
  • Degree Programme in Nursing
  • Degree Programme in Social Services
  • Degree Programme in Tourism
The main campuses of TAMK and PIRAMK are next to each other, on both sides of the same street. The new TAMK main campus area will be the biggest UAS campus area in Finland.

Photo: It takes two to TAMK is a newsletter reporting about the preparations of the merger.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Intensive Program (IP): Lobbying in Brussels

Photo by Lauri-Tapio Korhonen

From April 28 – May 10, 27 undergraduate students from Business and Management programmes offered at universities in 9 EU member states (Bielefeld/D, Rotterdam/NL, Tampere/FIN, Valenciennes/F, Vic/SP, Braga/P, Brno/CZ, Rzeszow/PL and Brussels/B) studied the theory and practice of Lobbying in the institutional environment of the European Union in Brussels.

Yancho Dimov, Ekaterina Tetchieva, and Lauri Korhonen from TAMK University of Applied Science aparticipated in the project. Mike Garant lead the group and acted as a tutor for one of the 5 study groups and social coordinator along with other leaders.

The group visited the European Parliament, two Directorate Generals from the European Commission as well as lobby firms, NGOs, non-EU State Diplomatic Missions to the EU, and other actors who lobby EU institutions. The students visited various people and held round-table discussions and interviews in order to gather first-hand information in order to understand the lobbying process in the EU.

Meeting parlament members

Another key aspect of the program was the mixing and working together between the various nationalities. One student remarked that during the two weeks, participants not only enhanced their knowledge of the subject but grew into better human beings.

Most of the project was paid for by the European Union. All in all the project was a great success. There are so many benefits that TAMK should work actively to participate in such programs in the future.

By: Mike Garant